A DECISION MAKING WEB PLATFORM FOR EDUCATIONAL CENTERS
University of Granada (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2013 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Conference name: 7th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 4-5 March, 2013
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Decision making is a field that has a strong presence in education area. It is applied, for example, whether a teacher needs to make a decision about how to correct a certain student bad habit or when several ways to transmit a concept have to be chosen.
A lot of research about the teacher-student interactions has been made. Nevertheless, there is not such investigation effort in teacher-teacher interactions neither in educational centers organization.
Every educational center is composed by a group of teachers and staff that have to be well coordinated in order to carry out their tasks successfully. Nowadays, this coordination is reached organizing meetings where individuals involved in a decision gather together and argue. Since most of the decisions must be made democratically, it is not possible for a unique individual to have all the responsibility. Usually, these meetings end when the possible options are voted and one is chosen. This way of making decisions has several problems. First of all, to gather all the individuals together is needed. This makes individuals lose time in traveling and, because staff involved in educational activities have different timetables and duties that cannot be left aside, it is very difficult to reunite all of them. Therefore, some will be missing and would not take part in the decision making process. Secondly, when a several amount of individuals are reunited, communication became complicated. For example, focusing in the matter of decision is difficult in this cases so, usually, the core of the discussion will be lost a couple of times making individuals lose time. Moreover, even if talking turns are used, it is possible for some individuals to not respect that so, some other ones may be unable to express their opinion.
If these issues and the fact that these meetings are quite frequent are taken into account, methods to make these processes more efficient must be developed. One way of achieving this goal is by using Web 2.0 technologies in order to develop a Web platform that acts as a substitute of meetings. Web 2.0 technologies are quite recent and allow individuals to communicate using the Web. Web 2.0 platforms such as Twitter are gaining fame and are used to express opinions regarding of the place where individuals are located.
Therefore, this contribution proposes a Web platform (using Lamp architecture) that allows the individuals involved in a decision to communicate and make decisions via Internet in a centralized and predefined environment. For that purpose, Web 2.0 technologies such as Twitter will be used for ease communication and encourage discussion. Consensus approaches are used in order to study the agreement among the decision makers and decide whether to encourage individuals to continue arguing or end the decision process.
The Web platform can be divided into two sections, one is the administration section ruled by the administrators whose goal is to create and control new decision processes and manage the database information and the other one is the user section whose objective is to establish communication among individuals who needs to make decisions and allow them to provide preferences. Each decision process is identified by its corresponding id that will be used as a tag in the discussion made in Twitter.
Thanks to the developed platform, all the described inconveniences that meetings have are resolved and decision making can be made in a tidy and accurate way.
Keywords: Computer Supported Collaborative Work, Web 2.0 and Social Networking, Twitter, Blogs, Wikis, decision making, educational centers organization.